A telephone-delivered psychosocial intervention improves dementia caregiver adjustment following nursing home placement
Year of Publication 2011
Objective: Study the preliminary efficacy of a telephone intervention, Family Intervention: Telephone Tracking-Nursing Home (FITT-NH) for improving dementia caregivers’ adjustment following nursing home placement.; Methods: Caregivers were enrolled on average 6 weeks following the care-recipients’ placement in a nursing home. Baseline assessment included self-report measures of caregiver emotional functioning, staff-caregiver interactions, placement satisfaction, health-related quality of life, and social support. Caregivers were randomly assigned to FITT-NH (n = 24) or a non-contact control condition (n = 22). Caregivers were urn randomized to balance groups on caregiver gender, relationship (spouse versus other), and facility type (dementia special care versus general). The intervention was entirely telephone-delivered in 10 contacts over 3 months. Caregivers randomized to non-contact control were not prevented from using other community-based mental health or support resources, therefore reflecting standard care. Intervention strategies were based on assessment of caregiver emotional adjustment, family functioning, staff-caregiver interactions, health, and social support. Treatment strategies are based on models of stress and coping process and family functioning.; Results: Groups did not differ in caregiver age, education, gender, relationship to the care recipient, length of caregiving, length of dementia diagnosis, or time since placement. Using mixed model analysis of variance, caregivers receiving FITT-NH showed a significant reduction in feelings of guilt related to placement, F(1,43) = 5.00, p < 0.05, and reported more positive perceptions of interactions with staff, F(1,43) = 4.59, p < 0.05, compared to standard care.; Conclusion: Findings provide preliminary evidence for FITT-NH as a potentially efficacious, brief, targeted psychosocial intervention for improving caregiver emotional adjustment following nursing home placement.; Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.